EDF has been informed of anomalies in welds on some steam generators and components used in nuclear reactors, it said on Tuesday, sending shares in the French power provider sharply lower. France has the world’s second largest fleet of nuclear reactors behind the United States and has exported its technology to China, Finland, South Africa and South Korea with Britain also set to use it. “(French nuclear conglomerate) Framatome has informed EDF of a deviation from technical standards governing the manufacture of nuclear-reactor components,” EDF said in a statement.
Reuters 10th Sept 2019 read more »
French Nuclear Giant EDF Warns of Substandard Reactor Parts. EDF didn’t say if any of the country’s 58 reactors will have to be halted, but electricity prices surged in anticipation of shutdowns. The announcement is another blow to the nuclear industry in France, which is more dependent on atomic energy than any other nation. EDF’s repeated problems with the quality of reactor components, which include faulty welds in its flagship Flamanville project and anomalies in manufacturing records at the Creusot forge, add to growing global concerns about the suitability of nuclear energy as an alternative to polluting fossil-fuel plants. Beyond the longstanding questions about reactor safety after the Chernobyl and Fukushima accidents, there are doubts about its economic viability as the cost of renewable energy plunges. This latest incident doesn’t help EDF’s image as it seeks to build nuclear plants abroad, Bloomberg Intelligence analyst Elchin Mammadov said in a note. “The technical issues related to the manufacturing of nuclear-reactor components by Framatome could affect EDF’s nuclear output,” similar to the impact of Creusot irregularities, he said. Shares of the company fell as much as 8.8%, the biggest drop in almost two years, and were 6.3% lower at 10.165 euros at 11:34 a.m. in Paris. French power prices for the fourth quarter rose as much as 8.5% to 55.55 euros a megawatt-hour, a record jump for the contract.
Bloomberg 10th Sept 2019 read more »
EDF detects soldering defects in its nuclear power plants, the share falls by 6%. Electricity producer and supplier EDF said Tuesday it has observed welding faults on equipment in service in some of its nuclear power plants and new equipment, not yet installed. In response, the EDF share in the first trade accuses the largest decline in the SBF 120 index by falling 6% to 10.20 euros. Contacted by the agency Agefi-Dow Jones, an EDF spokesperson was “not able immediately to provide the identity of the sites concerned by these manufacturing defects”. EDF intends to provide additional information “as and when characterizations are in progress”. On Monday, the group informed the Nuclear Safety Authority (ASN) of its first analyzes.
Les Echos 10th Sept 2019 read more »
Framatome has informed EDF of a deviation from technical standards governing the manufacture of nuclear-reactor components. Relating to standards associated with the manufacturing process, the deviation concerns an excursion from temperature ranges in certain areas during manufacturing operations, more specifically involving detensioning heat treatment on some steam generator welds. It concerns in-service components as well as new components which have not yet been installed on any sites.
EDF 10th Sept 2019 read more »
French energy giant EDF’s nuclear programme was dealt a further blow on Tuesday as welding problems at some of its plants sparked the biggest daily fall in the company’s shares in nearly two years. The anomalies with reactor components triggered a 7 per cent fall in the share price as investors tried to work out the extent of the setback. The components are made by Framatome, EDF’s majority-owned nuclear reactor construction unit. It is too early to tell whether reactors at some of EDF’s 58 nuclear power stations will be shut, but the problems caused a sharp rise in gas prices in the UK, which imports electricity from France. Britain generates a large proportion of its electricity from gas. EDF is engaged in a €45bn investment programme to prolong the life of its fleet of nuclear power stations but must also invest in renewables and close 14 plants by 2035 as part of a push to cut the percentage of nuclear electricity used in France from 72 per cent to 50 per cent. It must find the cash for all of that while carrying €37.4bn in net debt and roughly double that if some hybrid debt and its pension and nuclear liabilities are included. The government injected billions into EDF through a €4bn capital raise in 2017, while the company’s previous chief financial officer quit over concerns about strains Hinkley Point, the UK-based power station, was putting on the balance sheet. Mr Macron is also conscious of the risks of the badly delayed and over-budget next generation reactors under construction at Hinkley Point and Flamanville in France due in part to welding issues at the latter.
FT 10th Sept 2019 read more »
The French state electricity group building Britain’s new nuclear plant suffered another setback yesterday when it admitted to possible faults with components used in reactors in France. The disclosure alarmed investors, raised a new question mark over the French nuclear industry and will fuel speculation that slipshod practices have gained hold in a sector that supplies about three quarters of the country’s electricity. EDF said that a factory that made steam generators used in nuclear reactors had failed to follow standard procedures. The problem was with the welds on the generators, it said.
Times 11th Sept 2019 read more »
Electricite de France SA’s announcement that some of its nuclear reactors at home may contain substandard components is the latest setback in the country’s 40-year love affair with atomic energy. After commissioning its 58th reactor in 2002, EDF started building a new type of atomic plant in 2007. Its flagship Flamanville project in Western France was initially due be completed in 2012, though it’s been beset by construction problems.
Bloomberg 11th Sept 2019 read more »
The black series continues for EDF: the action of the electrician fell by 6.77% this Tuesday after the announcement of new soldering defects in its nuclear power plants, while the commissioning of the future EPR reactor has already been postponed until the end of 2022 due to major quality problems of the same type. In a statement issued earlier in the day, EDF reported a “deviation from the technical benchmark for manufacturing nuclear reactor components” . This discrepancy declared to the Nuclear Safety Authority (ASN) relates to “non-compliance with temperature ranges” in heat treatment operations ” carried out on certain steam generator welds”in the Saint-Marcel factory (Saône-et-Loire). EDF has acknowledged that, in addition to new equipment not yet delivered by its Framatome subsidiary (former Areva reactor division), “equipment in use” in its power stations was affected by this anomaly. The operator will have to identify the non-compliant steam generators and “confirm the ability to service” or repair them for a cost still unknown … These huge 500-tonne parts are indeed critical for the operation of nuclear reactors: they feed the turbine that produces electricity.
Liberation 10th Sept 2019 read more »